Animated Icons in PowerPoint – 3

This is the third post in a series describing how to construct common icons and add impact with animation.

Idea Icon (Light Bulb)

A light bulb going on traditionally represents the birth of an idea. Of course, sometimes a light bulb is just a light bulb.

The incandescent light bulb is constructed with standard Shapes with a hand-drawn element based on the Block Arc. The compact fluorescent version is similar, using rounded rectangles and two hand-drawn shapes (again, starting with the Block Arc),


To “light up” the bulbs, I used a 12-point Star shape with a soft edge, filled with yellow. For the CFT, I also copied the tube and filled with yellow. On a darker background I would use white or light blue rather than yellow. The animation effect is Circle/Out for the “glow” and Appear for the tube.  Here’s the result:


Like the clocks I’ve described in earlier posts, a calendar can represent the passing of time or urgency.

The icon represents a calendar with a page for each day; the page is torn off to reveal the next day. You could create a common calendar and tear off “months.”

The calendar and pages are made from simple PowerPoint shapes:


The page is picture-filled with a png version of the numeral (Copy, Paste Special/png).  As we found out in the “balls” post, you will have to crop the png version of the numeral to the size of the page; then Copy it, select the page and use Fill/Picture with the clipboard as the source.

Update: The page shape is actually inverted. The picture fill (numeral) will also be inverted unless you unclick Rotate with shape in the Picture or texture fill operation.

This “picture-fill” method has two advantages. First, the result is re-sizable. Also, if you apply the animation to the original page and duplicate it before filling with the next numeral, the animation will be inherited by each page. This saves having to manually animate each page separately. You could also use the Animation Painter (ppt2010) to copy animation from  each page to the next.

The animation is a Motion Path, coupled with Spin and Fade Out:


Here’s how the animation looks:

Launch Icon (Rocket)

To symbolize a product or project launch or another “beginning”, use a rocket.

The rocket is constructed from standard PowerPoint shapes:


The body is a Chord shape; the nose is a Isosceles Triangle and the fins are Parallelograms. Notice how the heavy outlines in the third rocket suggest a cartoon; I usually avoid this for a “serious” business audience.

For the animation, I added an exhaust plume. It’s a triangle with a suitably fiery fill:


I want the plume to appear and grow while the rocket rises. I used motion paths for the rocket and plume with a simultaneous Wipe of the plume. I also used “target” versions of the rocket and plume to determine the end points of the motion path (I used this technique in the vehicles post).


Here’s the result:

You can do more with the rocket – how about a longer journey? Or a failed launch?

Sales Icon (Shopping Cart)

Items falling into a shopping cart can represent purchases/sales, retail operations or, well, shopping.

The cart is constructed of circles and Freeforms (the frame and basket outline) and Lines; all the lines have Round Joins and Caps:


I converted the cart to a png for scalability.

I want the items (rectangles) to appear above the cart and drop into it. Here’s the layout – the boxes in the cart are the “targets:”


Note that small rotations are required for the boxes to match the targets. Here’s the animation; each box has a Fade, Motion Path and Spin:


Here’s the video of the result:

As usual, If you would like a free copy of a PowerPoint file containing these objects, use the link below and click on the PowerPoint icon to download a “source” PowerPoint file:

PowerPointy blog – animated icons 3

See this page for more on downloading files.

If you have questions, praise or complaints, please add a comment below. If you appreciate my efforts, liking or following this blog might be a good idea.



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